The possibility of running a 72km solo circumnavigation of Mount Ruapehu from Whakapapa Village on the Round the mountain track is returning next year.

The annual Ring of Fire Ultra is back for its third year at Tongariro National Park, a Unesco World Heritage Area.

The event will bring together national and worldwide intrepid trail runners to conquer a number of different lengthy circumnavigation tracks and trail runs.

Event organisers, The Event Collective, are excited to once again deliver the event within the Ruapehu region.

Advertisement

"The Ring of Fire is already revered as one of Australasia's top endurance races with its unique fusion of inspiring landscape, authentic culture and epic adventure", The Event Collective's Jason Cameron said.

The event not only offers the signature 72km solo but a three-leg 72km relay, a 50km race from Turoa Ski Fields to Whakapapa Village and a 24km trail run from Tukino to Whakapapa Village.

"We are grateful for the support of Iwi partners – Ngāti Hikairo, Ngāti Uenuku and Ngāti Rangi, Ruapehu District Council and the Department of Conservation for making this life changing event possible," Cameron said.

Online entries open on July 10 at midday with limited super bird entries.

This year's entries were all sold within 30 minutes. Of the 675 athletes competing, 102 are international runners from 11 countries.

Cameron said he encourages all athletes and their supporters who are planning to attend, to start planning their accommodation as soon as possible as Chateau Tongariro near the Whakapapa Village will be in high demand.

"There are other accommodation options within the Ruapehu region including National Park Village, Ohakune, Raetihi and Taumarunui," said Cameron.

Event festivities will kick off on March 20 with a Powhiri, registration, briefings and an expo.

Advertisement

The first events will begin in the early hours of March 21 with midnight the cut off time for competitors.

The following day a post-event brunch and awards ceremony will be held.

In 2018, records were set for the Ring of Fire 72km Solo by world ranked athlete Lucy Bartholomew from Australia and Sam Clarke from New Zealand.